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Amnesty International : Nigeria didn’t act on Boko Haram kidnap warnings
Amnesty International : Nigeria didn't act on Boko Haram kidnap warnings

Amnesty International : Nigeria didn’t act on Boko Haram kidnap warnings

An Amnesty International report claims that Nigerian security forces had warning of an imminent attack four hours before Boko Haram abducted 300 schoolgirls from their school in Chibok in rural Nigeria, but failed to send reinforcements or otherwise act to prevent the abduction.

In a press release Amnesty International UK claims that the Nigerian military “failed to act on advance warnings” on the abduction of school girls by militants in northeastern Nigeria.
Of the 300 plus girls abducted initially, 53 escaped soon after being captured in Chibok. At least 276 are still missing and are believed to be kept captive in remote forests.

Amnesty learned of the warnings from local officials and two senior military officers as it cited “multiple interviews with credible sources” to assert the same.

Amnesty says it was told that the military H.O in Maiduguri, capital of the north-eastern Borno state, was aware of the imminent attack on Chibok town soon after 07:00 pm local time.
It says local herdsmen said that a group of armed men had asked them where the Government Girls’ Secondary School was located in the town.

After which they contacted a local official to inform about the incident but despite the intimation no reinforcements were rushed in to help protect the town in the remote area.
It was subsequently attacked around midnight. According to Amnesty, an inability to garner troops and fear of engaging with better equipped forces prevented forces from being deployed.
“This abduction could have been prevented,” asserts Amnesty spokeswoman Susanna Flood.

The fall out of revelation of the Nigerian security forces failing to prevent the school attack – despite knowing about it in advance – will “amplify the national and international outcry at this horrific crime”, says the Amnesty report.

Amnesty’s Africa director Netsanet Belay speaking from Abuja says, it “amounts to a gross dereliction of Nigeria’s duty to protect civilians, who remain sitting ducks for such attacks.”
He called on the Nigerian leadership to “use all lawful means at their disposal to secure the girls’ safe release and ensure nothing like this can happen again.”

Meanwhile Nigeriam authorities are skeptical and say they “doubt the veracity” of the Amnesty report.

“If the government was aware [beforehand] there would have been an intervention [against the militants],” Nigerian Information Minister Labaran Maku told BBC World TV. But he assured the authorities would still investigate the claims.

The abduction of hundreds of Nigerian school girls is not just about the abduction per se of some teens in remote African region. It is about education, religion, fundamentalist beliefs, global politics, national politics, history, corruption, oil, terrorism.

Above all it is about sex trafficking and violence against girls. It’s a classic case of global misogyny which needs to be attacked head on with all forces at the disposal of the international community.

Canadajournal/Agencies/Press Releases

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